Windsor Premier: Family starts foundation in Windsor after son diagnosed with rare Kawasaki disease | MyWindsorNow.com

Windsor Premier: Family starts foundation in Windsor after son diagnosed with rare Kawasaki disease

Kelly Ragan
kragan@greeleytribune.com

When Cooper Logan was 3, he got very sick. He ran a fever and screamed in pain. His stomach hurt, a lot. At first, doctors thought it was appendicitis. They scheduled him for surgery, removed his appendix and Logan went home.

He was doing better. But then the pain medication wore off. He ran a 104-degree fever. That wasn't normal. Cooper spent nine days in isolation. He wasn't getting better and doctors still didn't know what was wrong.

Cooper, of Timnath, transferred to Children's Hospital Colorado in Denver. Doctors there diagnosed him in two and a half days. Cooper had Kawasaki disease.

A total of 12.5 days had passed since the symptoms started. There's usually a 10-day window to treat Kawasaki disease to avoid severe, lasting complications.

At 12.5 days, Logan missed that window. Blood vessels throughout his body became inflamed, causing a large coronary artery aneurysm.

"Kawasaki disease is highly misdiagnosed because it's so rare," said Shawn, Cooper's father.

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Though it's rare, Kawasaki disease is the leading cause of acquired heart disease in children, according to the Mayo Clinic's website.

No one knows what causes the disease. Scientists don't believe the disease is contagious from person to person. Some theories link the disease to bacteria, viruses or other environmental factors but as of yet, none of the theories have been proved. Some genes may increase a child's susceptibility to Kawasaki disease, according to the Mayo Clinic.

Cooper will have heart problems all his life. He'll need multiple bypass surgeries, Shawn said. They aren't sure what his life expectancy is, but they're determined to keep living life.

After the diagnosis, Shawn and his wife, Meredith knew they needed to do something. So they started the Kawasaki Kids Foundation, which is based out of Windsor. Their main goal is to help find a cure for the disease, raise awareness and support other families.

The foundation has already helped 14 kids, Shawn said. When more people know the symptoms, it's more likely they'll catch the disease early enough to prevent serious complications.

This year, the Kawasaki Kids Foundation will hold two events near Windsor to raise money for the foundation, one being a golf tournament 9 a.m. June 26 at the Ptarmigan Country Club, 5416 Vardon Way in Fort Collins. The Kickin' Kawasaki 5K race will take place Sept. 23 at the Pelican Falls Golf Course.

Logan is 8 years old now. He's facing stage three kidney failure after an allergic reaction to some of the medication he received for Kawasaki disease. He's on the transplant list.

Despite all the complications, Logan is a pretty normal kid.

He loves his two brothers and he loves sports. He'll never be able to play contact sports like football or basketball for his school, though he'll play at recess and with his brothers.

He knows his limits, Meredith said. That's why she lets him run around so much. He knows when he needs to stop and rest his heart.

Logan knows won't always be able to play basketball like he does now. Things will change as his heart gets worse and he needs bypass surgery. That makes him sad, but he'll play while he can.

"You've got to let a kid live," Meredith said.

For more

For more information, go to https://www.kawasakikidsfoundation.org/.

• • •

Symptoms of Kawasaki disease

The disease usually appears in three phases, according to the Mayo Clinic.

Signs and symptoms of the first phase may include:

» A fever that is often is higher than 102.2 F (39 C) and lasts more than three days.

» Extremely red eyes (conjunctivitis) without a thick discharge.

» A rash on the main part of the body (trunk) and in the genital area.

» Red, dry, cracked lips and an extremely red, swollen tongue (strawberry tongue).

» Swollen, red skin on the palms of the hands and the soles of the feet.

» Swollen lymph nodes in the neck and perhaps elsewhere.

» Irritability.

Second phase

» Peeling of the skin on the hands and feet, especially the tips of the fingers and toes, often in large sheets.

» Joint pain.

» Diarrhea.

» Vomiting.

» Abdominal pain.

Third phase

In the third phase of the disease, signs and symptoms slowly go away unless complications develop. It may be as long as eight weeks before energy levels seem normal again.

When to see a doctor

If a child has a fever that lasts more than three days, contact your child’s doctor, or see your child’s doctor if your child has a fever along with four or more of the following signs and symptoms:

» Redness in both eyes

» A very red, swollen tongue

» Redness of the palms or soles

» Skin peeling

» A rash

» Swollen lymph nodes

Treating Kawasaki disease within 10 days of its onset may greatly reduce the chances of lasting damage.

Information provided by the Mayo Clinic

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